May 5, 2014

The first reference to IPA. Just.

About this time last year, beer historian Martyn Cornell posted about the first occurrence of the term 'India Pale Ale', 29 August, 1829. It was 6.5 years before the previous known first usage and was notably from a Sydney newspaper. Australia was into IPA before it was cool. We're just a bunch of beard-wearing hipster convicts.

As I was ferreting around in the depths of Trove today I discovered a reference to IPA from 27 August of the same year, just two days earlier. It's the same ad, run in the same newspaper so it's not really moving the needle in terms of the history but I guess it's worth pointing out.

The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser,
27 August, 1829

The ad is a bit unclear as to whether it's advertising an IPA brewed by Taylor or whether it's referring to Taylor's pale ale and an East India pale ale. The former is a possibility with "Taylor's" referring to their stout or porter. Taylor's brown stout (or porter) and pale ale had been advertised together a number of times in the preceding years. Their stout in particular appears so often in colonial advertising that it's conceivable that it could be referred to simple as "Taylor's". However, the latter seems to make more sense grammatically. Check out the post by Cornell for more discussion about it.

This is the kind of ad I'm talking about. From:
The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser,
25 July, 1828

So there you go, a tiny discovery that doesn't change things at all! That's what I'm all about.

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